­[Restauration] Ferrari F40

It's been a long time i wanted a realistic Ferrari F40, without paying for an expensive Kyosho or AutoArt, and with an old Majorette beater, i tried to reproduce it!

Here's what i managed to do:
First, the red color was a must. In the front, i made a few decals, especially for the lights and the logos.

You can see that i changed the wheels for some better ones, coming from an old Hot Wheels. I also added details on the interior, painting red seats.

I then recreated a rear window, added lights (made with some plastic coming from a model kit) and created a decal for the liense plate.

It's not perfect, especially because the varnish didn't work out well with the black paint. But it's still pretty showable! Thanks for looking :)


New additions : 17 december 2011

Hi folks,

Since i'm mainly focusing on uploading my collection to my new "Car Collection" page, i don't have much time to do big posts with a lot of research and stuff. Instead, i thought i could make a few posts on what's new in my collection, and you'll be able to find them with a blue writing in my Car Collection page. I plan to do these updates regularly (it means that i have to buy diecasts regularly :D)

'35 Classic Caddy

As its name tells, this diecast is clearly a classic. Introduced in 1982 by Hot Wheels, it has been used numerous times over years, and is still in the 2011 lineup. It can be identified as a reproduction of the Cadillac 370-D V-12 Fleetwood Town Cabriolet (can be seen on the pic at the right). Hot Wheels's one is a nice replica, lot of details included, such as the wheels in fenders. The one i got is slightly used, but still really presentable. Unfortunately, you can see bad paint quality on the hood, with a lot of orange peel. The edition i got is 1989's blue with white walls, a quite common one. Still, i didn't have one, and it came in a junk box i got for 1$, so it is welcome :)

Chrysler Firepower

We're coming on a much more modern era, with this awesome concept by Chrysler, introduced in 2006's Hot Wheels regular line. It is a casting that has not been used often, with its presence in 2006, 2008 and in one of the 2011's 20-pack. I like this kind of concept, pretty realistic lines. The Hot Wheels one is "not bad", pretty realistic lines, but missing tampos in front. Even more, the windows are quite strange, and doesn't fit the car so well. But this 2006 edition is welcomed in my collection, and is quite rare. The front tampos would have been a huuugee benefit to this casting though.

Chevrolet Camaro Convertible

I have quite the collection of Camaros... but not so much in convertibles, especially in modern ones. So this one was a nice add, and a nice completion to my collection of this legendary American car. Also known as '95 Camaro, or '95 Camaro Convertible, this casting is a replica of the fourth generation of the american car, without the facelift (that happened in 1998). It was quite a monster and real life, way too big and not too much powerful like it used to be in '60s-'70s (this is why it disappeared in 2002). This Hot Wheels casting appeared in the main line in 1995 in a simple aqua color, and is still used in the 10-packs. I'm really fortunate to have found the special 1997 "30th Anniversary of Camaro Collectible Line" one, with its special color. It's an awesomely done casting, with tampos all around, even mirrors! Wheels are somewhat strange, but Hot Wheels are pretty much spot on with wheels.

'73 Caprice Wagon

Of course, we keep the best for the end! I already had a Caprice Wagon, but it was a highly tuned version, and even if i like this casting, i thought it didn't represent the car so well. But with the availability of the Release 18 by Johnny Lightning in my area, i had the chance to put my hand on the Police version, that is a stunner. Now this is a perfect diecast! Take a look at those details : the wonderful paint, that reminds me from the Dodge Monaco, the highly detailed lightbar, tampos, great wheels... it's a nice add in any collection. Originally released in 2007 in the tuned version (that you can find in my Car Collection page), it has been declined in regular, derby and now police. Trust me, you need this car! *Unfortunately i didn't found any pic of the police version.

I hope you liked this post, and feedback is appreciated! :)


Little article there...

There's a new page called "Car Collection" listed under the front image...

You can access it to take a look at my entire collection! It will be updated regularly... Have fun :)


[Australian Classics] Is it a car or a truck? Part 3 of 3

Let's conclude this serie with a different country, the country of kangaroos and koalas, and a country featuring some legendary cars (just think of Holden, Ford Falcon). Talking of important australian cars, this post will feature one of the most well-known of them, i said, the Holden Ute!

Beginning of the famous "UTE"
Very first Ute.

70's Ute.
Let's go back in time, around 1948, after the world war II. General Motors turned its attention on producing an all-Australian car, under the brand Holden. It was first known as the FX Sedan, introduced in 1948. With the industry prospering and the increasing demand for a "coupe-utility" type vehicle, the first Ute was introduced in 1951, many years before the first El Camino or Ranchero. It was quite rugged, but really durable and most importantly, really affordable. It was able to reach a great 105 km/h, as well as being able to climb any hill or take an important load, with a great fuel economy. This successful model followed evolution of the regular Holden sedan and its names, such as FJ, EJ, HQ etc... Last of all these evolutions was produced in 1984, and was similar to the Holden Kingswood. Just as the Ranchero, the petrol crisis somewhat killed the car, with a demand for much smaller vehicles.

Matchbox, under the old brand Superfast, produced a UTE under the simpler name "Holden Pick-Up", and it first appeared in 1977. It was a plain simple diecast of those years, without any tampos or mirrors, but looking pretty solid. Without the characteristic fancy colors of the 70's Superfast, it looks great. It reproduces well the real lines, and the red flashy color fits it well. Sadly, mine is missing the two huge motorcycles that are supposed to be in the bed. Those are an awesome touch to the casting. The yellow windows are quite horrible though, and would have been benefited from regular ones. Take a look at the front decal... i wonder what this "500" is refering too... maybe some NASCAR or something? The tow hook at the back is awesome, with some caravan. Well, a plain good old casting from the seventeens.

Evaluation : Lesney Superfast Holden Pick-Up
  • Accuracy (looking like the real car?) : 8/10
  • Details (mirrors, wheels, other stuff)  : 7/10
  • Color : 7/10
  • Quality of the fabrication :  9/10
  • Personal factor (is it a must for my collection?): 6/10
  • Total : 37/50

Modern interpretation

Most recent one.
After three years of development, a new version of the Ute was born in 1990. It claimed to be the "largest ever built", and the most comfortable and powerful. Clearly, it was a change of mind from the rugged first version. The look was much sportier, with slick lines and a "hidden" rear bed. Even more, the extreme HSV Maloo Ute was introduced, featuring a powerful 5.0 l V8 of 241 hp. Aussies clearly enjoyed the return of their famous vehicle, and it became an instant hit.  Since then, the Ute has been renewed in 2000 and 2007, and now features modern sporty lines. It offers a wide range of models, from the basic "Ute Omega" to the much radical "Ute SS-V Redline", with its 362 hp (same from the Commodore sedan). It is widely recognized in the lime green color. HSV Maloo is still offered, with a huge RAM air hood.

Introduced in the Matchbox's main line in 2010, their replica of the SSV version is just a fabulous diecast. Wonderfully done tampos, flashy and attractive color, perfect lines reproduction, and a great set of wheels. I mean, Aussies car are badly represented in diecast, but this one is a must. It has been elected as "Matchbox diecast of the year" in 2010 by the well-known MCCH (Matchbox Collectors Club Hall). I must say that the rear lights are a bit off, but that's a minor detail compared to the rest of the car. You can only admire Matchbox team's work on this one, and i'm simply hoping there will be more like this in the future!

Evaluation : Matchbox Holden Ute SSV
  • Accuracy (looking like the real car?) : 9/10
  • Details (mirrors, wheels, other stuff)  : 9/10
  • Color : 10/10
  • Quality of the fabrication :  9/10
  • Personal factor (is it a must for my collection?): 10/10
  • Total : 47/50

Enjoy the pics of those Australians :)
Next article will probably talk about generic diecasts....


[American Classics] Is it a car or a truck? Part 2 of 3

Sorry for the very few articles in the last months... school is demanding! I'll try to post more, as i bought a lot of interesting castings in the recent weeks. For now, i should at least finish what i began about those strange car-trucks....

The original one
Original one.

As mentioned in the El Camino's post, the Ranchero was the first coupe-utility vehicle, introduced in late 1956. The first Ranchero was a beast of car, based on the Ranch SW of those years. It lasted only three years, from 1956 to 1959. What we could call as the "real" first Ranchero was introduced in the same time as the much known Falcon, in 1960. It was much smaller and practical than the first one. Engines offered varied from a pityful 90hp L6 to a powerful 4.7L Windsor V8. It was way more basic than the El Camino, and therefore suffered from the competition. Ranchero's been based on the Falcon until 1967, following style designs of the Falcon. Since 1960, this coupe utility was officially named "Ford Falcon Ranchero", but abandoned the Falcon name in 1966.

Johnny Lightning, as usual, made a nice replica of a cool american classic car. We're talking of the 1965 Ranchero this time, last edition of the first Falcon Ranchero. This diecast appeared in the JL serie Working Class Truck and SUVs, in the fourth release to be more precise. It's obviously a more luxuous version, with some chrome touches and a nice bicolor exterior. Just as almost every JL diecast, it is perfectly detailed, with some awesome small chrome wheels, and nice paint accent. Even more, the opening hood reveals a nice little engine. Altough i would prefer to have the red one issued in the first release, it is still an awesome diecast. But, (there's ALWAYS a but), where are the mirrors?

Evaluation : Johnny Lightning '65 Ford Ranchero
  • Accuracy (looking like the real car?) : 9/10
  • Details (mirrors, wheels, other stuff)  : 8/10
  • Color : 7/10
  • Quality of the fabrication :  9/10
  • Personal factor (is it a must for my collection?): 8/10
  • Total : 41/50

Falcon switch

In 1968, the old Fairlane/Falcon was replaced by the new Ford Torino, with a much more angular and bigger shape. The new Ranchero followed this and became the biggest one since the original model. This 1969 model is also known as the most powerful one, even offering a 351 Windsor V8 (same as the '69 Mustang). The Ranchero also been redesigned in 1970, with a more agressive look, and a "Ram-Air" hood. It also offered a version called "Ranchero Squire" offering some wood trims on the side. In 1972, the Torino and the Ranchero went under a major redesign (again!), with a larger, heavier design. It also offered a large variety of powerful V8 engines. After all those changes, the Ranchero remained the same until Torino's disparition in 1976.

About diecast now, i own a fabulous version of Hot Wheels '72 Ranchero (you'll rarely see me use the word "fabulous" about a HW diecast). First offered in 2009 in the HW Classics serie, it was intended to be a high-end diecast. My orange-black 2010 Delievery Serie Ranchero is really well-done. The color is instantly appealing, and the quality of fabrication is stunning. Real rubber tires are just awesome, and the tuning of the car is quite awesome. A few tampos could have been added though, especially at the back of the car. And how about some mirrors? But i must say the car looks "slick", and is a nice add to any collection. I hope we'll also see the stock version in the future.

Evaluation : Hot Wheels '72 Ford Ranchero
  • Accuracy (looking like the real car?) : 7/10
  • Details (mirrors, wheels, other stuff)  : 8/10
  • Color : 10/10
  • Quality of the fabrication :  10/10
  • Personal factor (is it a must for my collection?): 8/10
  • Total : 42/50

End of the Ranchero

With the disparition of the Torino, the 77 Ranchero needed a new base, and therefore switched on the Ford LTD II. It resulted in an even bigger car, and with the petrol crisis, it was clear that the market direction wasn't the same. Ford decided that small pick-up trucks would lead the way, and replaced the Ranchero with the now well-known Ranger in 1979.